Friday, October 19, 2007

The Left and the Islamists

Walid Phares, the author of The War of Ideas: Jihadism against Democracy, on the marriage of convenience between the anti-war Western Left and the thoroughly warlike jihadis:

Despite all the mutual mayhem across the Mediterranean and throughout the Middle East, an unnatural alliance was established by elites of the two camps, even while blood was being shed in the 1990s. Setting ideologies and history aside, the Islamist tacticians and neo-Left pragmatists gradually converged on a two-lane path against liberal democracies and the specter of a free market and pluralist Middle East.

This tactical cooperation between radical Islam and the Left is also the subject of David Horowitz's Unholy Alliance: Radical Islam and the American Left. While Horowitz focuses on the radicals behind the US anti-war movement, Phares looks at the phenomenon from the point of view of the Islamists:

The jihadi manipulation of the bourgeois-Neo-Marxist "struggle" has played a central role in the so-called "mass demonstrations" in the West since 2002, and the demonstrations themselves are an important component of the War of Ideas against democracy. On campuses, both in North America and Western Europe, the jihadi-antiwar axis has planted deep roots, and thanks to the skills of university-based anarchist groups, the jihadists have found a cover they can hide under, instead of simply becoming members of the typical Wahabi-contolled Muslim Student Unions.

The Islamists have about as much chance of restoring the Caliphate as the Left has of seeing off free-market democracy, but the former group is prepared to keep killing even when it knows it has no chance of victory, and the latter is prepared to tolerate the excesses of its allies because it knows that its opposition to the War on Terror is one of the few causes that gives it a semblance of legitimacy. Ultimately it may not be freedom-loving Westerners who defeat either ideology, but rather a desire for peace and prosperity by the majority of ordinary people in the Middle East that renders them irrelevant.


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Anonymous said...

Great article by Phares. Thanks for posting

Brian H said...

The Left's beef with democracies is that the voters decline to give them irrevocable power. Chavez has a solution for that, though ...

Brian H said...

One more thing:
In the interests of symmetry, I suggest/request the term “NeoCom”, the leftist who wants to implement robust socialism by a process of elimination.

Irwin Chusid said...

Considering the de rigueur libertine leanings of the Left, you'd think they'd wake up and realize that the jihadists want to take their fun away.

Anonymous said...

Dear Brian Fat Head: "the leftist who wants to implement robust socialism by a process of elimination" defines Stalinism; Stalin eliminated several millions to 'implement robust socialism' so there is no need to now introduce prissy euphemisms (like the prissy Liberals and Democrats love to do) to obscure the truth, is there?
Call a spade a spade, and a Stalinist a Stalinist, and we will all sing praises to your clarity.